Police say woman sent text message prior to fatal wreck, unable to verify ‘Happy’ Facebook post

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sanford3HIGH POINT, N.C. — High Point Police said Tuesday an investigation has revealed 32-year-old Courtney Ann Sanford sent a text message “immediately prior” to a fatal wreck on Business I-85 on April 24, however they were unable to verify that she posted to Facebook prior to the wreck.

The wreck happened on April 24 on Business 85 in High Point. Investigators say Sanford crossed the median and crashed head-on into a truck.

Sanford died at the scene.

2f fbOn April 25, investigators said some of Sanford’s friends and family told them about a Facebook post that Sanford made around the same time as the crash. Investigators initially said the Facebook post was made seconds before the crash.

“The Facebook text happened at 8:33 a.m. We got the call on the wreck at 8:34 a.m.,” Lt. Chris Weisner said on April 24.

In a press release issued on Tuesday, police said the initial reports of a Facebook post and selfies being posted from the moving vehicle immediately prior to the accident “could not be validated by our investigation.”

A screenshot of Sanford's Facebook post (with her photo removed).

A screenshot of Sanford’s Facebook post (with her photo removed).

A friend of Sanford sent WGHP a screenshot of the Facebook post on April 25 that read: “The happy song makes me HAPPY!”

Police did indicate why they were unable to validate the Facebook post.

Police said evidence from the phone “indicates the victim initiated a text message immediately prior to the accident.” The cause of the accident has been determined to be “distracted driving.”

4 fbThe collision caused the truck to run off the road and hit a tree, police said. Sanford’s car also went off the road and caught fire.

John Wallace Thompson, 73, of Garner, who was driving the truck, wasn’t injured, police said.

Sanford was wearing a seatbelt, but it was not being used properly, investigators said.

Laura Fuqua and Liza Palazzi, two of Sanford’s best friends, said she was on her way to a new job as a respiratory therapist and was excited. It was just her third day.

Palazzi and Fuqua want people to understand distracted driving is deadly and needs to stop.

sanford2Palazzi teaches middle school and she made sure her students got the message.

“I told [my students], ‘This is real life. This happens whether you think it will or not, it happens. It happened to your teacher’s best friend,’” said Palazzi.

The two girls were sorority sisters with Sanford. They say she was faithful, caring and will be missed.

“I have no doubt of where she is. No doubt,” said Fuqua.


  • Ashley

    this is so sad, so young and had her whole life ahead of her…..DO NOT TEXT AND DRIVE ITS NOT WORTH YOUR LIFE

  • Ken

    Is it possible the police could not verify the post because the post was deleted? If there was screenshot of the actual post with the time, it should be a no brainer. Either way, it’s tragic that something so simple as not paying attention to the road (in addition to not having her seatbelt on properly) had to end this way. Hopefully others who text while driving will leaner from this but sadly most will not I’m afraid.

    • hns

      All of her friends and family had the actual screen shot. What was originally posted by the news, some random person, etc. had the time photoshopped out. It’s just sad it took this long for them to get it out there.

  • FaithC

    Sorry this young woman is dead. People have to understand they are not the” one” person who can text and drive. Just put the phone down and don’t pick it up until you get where you are going. There is no information that is so important you need to die for it.

  • The One

    I’m sorry but I have seen this story posted everywhere for 10 days now, everyone knows not to text and drive. But does anyone obey the law?NO!!!!!!!! Just like every other law. Find some new NEWS to report.

  • Laura-Kathryn

    I am the Laura Fuqua spoken of in this interviee and it is my picture that you are seeing of myself and Courtney in this post. Fox 8 knew of the 8:18 time stamped photo of her Facebook post that CLEARLY read 8:18am. I am saddened that prior to re-running this story after lagging of time that they did not include the time stamped photo upon my permisson.

  • Lf

    Miss laura congratulate his work has been excellent and now everything is clearer since this news broke the genre around the world and all the comments, and I think she may rest in peace and friendship for her was so great that achieving something important in memory of her and this will also give the world tour as the value of true friendship transcends borders you are enormously valuable congratulate … ;)

  • Lf

    Departe God is justice and truth this is a great prueva it and most importantly has shown that true friendship never ceases to be in force even after death and his friends as they fought to prove his death and was really clean his honor after so malicious comment that this wrong genre news around the world but in my general opinion the damage is already done and if not for the brave Starring enverdad their friends they want this case would have been even so, hopefully the police have the courage to spread the news of the mistake made in the same manner as the erroneous news that occurred initially start spreading.

  • Tnuc

    I’m just glad Darwinism had taken another idiot off the road. Now I don’t have to worry about her crashing into my wife or mother and killing them

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